Preventing Colon Cancer

Medical Intel from MedStar Washington Hospital Center

Preventing Colon Cancer

Colon cancer is one of the very few preventable cancers. However, it typically has no symptoms in its early stages, making it critical to take advantage of available screenings, namely colonoscopy.

Men and women of average risk should have regular screenings beginning at age 50. However, your doctor may recommend more frequent or earlier screenings if you have other risk factors, such as a family history of colon cancer.

Common symptoms of colon cancer may include:

  • Change in bowel habits, including diarrhea or constipation
  • Change in consistency of stool
  • Rectal bleeding or blood in stool
  • Persistent gas, abdominal pain or cramps
  • Feeling that your bowel does not empty completely
  • Weakness or fatigue
  • Unexplained weight loss

Many people avoid the screening due to the inconvenience or perceived discomfort. But following this recommendation could very well save your life – twenty percent of those screened show a polyp or other growth. Caught early, it can be identified and removed before it becomes cancer.

For more information, or to schedule an appointment, call

202-759-0267

As heard on WTOP Radio:

Jennifer Ayscue, MD

Jennifer Ayscue, MD
Colorectal Surgeon

To make a screening appointment, call 202-759-0267

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